Sunday, November 28, 2021

[Mollusca • 2022] Global Diversification and Evolutionary History of Onchidiid Slugs (Gastropoda, Pulmonata: Onchidiidae)


Onchidella (Hoffmannolahansi (Ev. Marcus and Er. Marcus, 1967), Sinaloa, Mexico,
photo by Q. Y. Abadia-Chanona and O. H. Avila-Poveda;  
 Peronina tenera (Stoliczka, 1869), Pulau Burung, Malaysia; 
Onchidium typhae Buchannan, 1800, Andaman Islands, India; 

Marmaronchis vaigiensis (Quoy & Gaimard, 1825), Gilimanuk, Bali, Indonesia;
 Platevindex coriaceus (Semper, 1880),  Mabini, Bohol, Philippines;
 Semperoncis cf. montana (Plate, 1893), Mt. Palali, Luzon, Philippines, at around 1400 m altitude,
photo by R. Lücking; 

Laspionchis boucheti
 
Dayrat & Goulding, 2019, 39 mm long, Can Gio, Vietnam; 
Paromoionchis tumidus (Semper, 1880), Calatagan, Batangas, Philippines; 
Wallaconchis sinanui Goulding & Dayrat, 2018, Lateri, Ambon, Indonesia; 

Melayonchis eloisae 
Dayrat, 2017, Pasir Park, Singapore; 
Alionchis jailoloensis 
Goulding & Dayrat 2018,  Kao, Halmahera, Indonesia; 
Peronia peronii (Cuvier, 1804), Mahebourg waterfront, Mauritius.

in Goulding, Khalil, Tan, et al., 2022.

Highlights: 
• A global molecular phylogeny of onchidiid slugs is reconstructed.
• The common ancestor of onchidiid slugs likely lived in the rocky intertidal.
• Onchidiids transitioned into new habitats in mangrove forests during the Miocene.
• Diversification is the result of allopatric and sympatric (ecological) speciation.

Abstract
Many marine species are specialized to specific parts of a habitat. In a mangrove forest, for instance, species may be restricted to the mud surface, the roots and trunks of mangrove trees, or rotting logs, which can be regarded as distinct microhabitats. Shifts to new microhabitats may be an important driver of sympatric speciation. However, the evolutionary history of these shifts is still poorly understood in most groups of marine organisms, because it requires a well-supported phylogeny with relatively complete taxon sampling. Onchidiid slugs are an ideal case study for the evolutionary history of habitat and microhabitat shifts because onchidiid species are specialized to different tidal zones and microhabitats in mangrove forests and rocky shores, and the taxonomy of the family in the Indo-West Pacific has been recently revised in a series of monographs. Here, DNA sequences for onchidiid species from the North and East Pacific, the Caribbean, and the Atlantic are used to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships among Onchidella species, and are combined with new data for Indo-West Pacific species to reconstruct a global phylogeny of the family. The phylogenetic relationships of onchidiid slugs are reconstructed based on three mitochondrial markers (COI, 12S, 16S) and three nuclear markers (28S, ITS2, H3) and nearly complete taxon sampling (all 13 genera and 62 of the 67 species). The highly-supported phylogeny presented here suggests that ancestral onchidiids most likely lived in the rocky intertidal, and that a lineage restricted to the tropical Indo-West Pacific colonized new habitats, including mudflats, mangrove forests, and high-elevation rainforests. Many onchidiid species in the Indo-West Pacific diverged during the Miocene, around the same time that a high diversity of mangrove plants appears in the fossil record, while divergence among Onchidella species occurred earlier, likely in the Eocene. It is demonstrated that ecological specialization to microhabitats underlies the divergence between onchidiid genera, as well as the diversification through sympatric speciation in the genera Wallaconchis and Platevindex. The geographic distributions of onchidiid species also indicate that allopatric speciation played a key role in the diversification of several genera, especially Onchidella and Peronia. The evolutionary history of several morphological traits (penial gland, rectal gland, dorsal eyes, intestinal loops) is examined in relation to habitat and microhabitat evolutionary transitions and provides the first evidence that the rectal gland of onchidiids is an adaptation to high intertidal and terrestrial habitats.

Keywords: Biogeography, divergence time, ecological speciation, habitat transition, mangroves, rocky intertidal




Photos from top to bottom are
 Onchidella nigricans (Quoy and Gaimard, 1832), 15 mm long, New South Wales, Australia; Onchidella (Hoffmannolahansi (Ev. Marcus and Er. Marcus, 1967), 40 mm long, Sinaloa, Mexico, photo by Quetzalli Yasu Abadia-Chanona and Omar Hernando Avila-Poveda;  France;
 Peronina tenera (Stoliczka, 1869), 36 mm long, Pulau Burung, Malaysia; Onchidium typhae Buchannan, 1800, 40 mm long, Andaman Islands, India;

 Melayonchis eloisae Dayrat, 2017, 15 mm long, Pasir Park, Singapore; Marmaronchis vaigiensis (Quoy & Gaimard, 1825), 23 mm long, Gilimanuk, Bali, Indonesia; 
Platevindex coriaceus (Semper, 1880), 37 mm long, Mabini, Bohol, Philippines; Semperoncis cf. montana (Plate, 1893), Mt. Palali, Luzon, Philippines, at around 1400 m altitude, photo by Robert Lücking;

 Onchidina australis (Semper, 1880), 45 mm long, Blackman Park, New South Wales, Australia; Laspionchis boucheti Dayrat & Goulding, 2019, 39 mm long, Can Gio, Vietnam; 
Paromoionchis tumidus (Semper, 1880), 31 mm long, Calatagan, Batangas, Philippines; Wallaconchis sinanui Goulding & Dayrat, 2018, 9 mm long, Lateri, Ambon, Indonesia; 
Alionchis jailoloensis Goulding & Dayrat 2018, 48 mm long, Kao, Halmahera, Indonesia; Peronia peronii (Cuvier, 1804), 110 mm long, Mahebourg waterfront, Mauritius.


Tricia C. Goulding, Munawar Khalil, Shau Hwai Tan, Rebecca A. Cumming and Benoît Dayrat. 2022. Global Diversification and Evolutionary History of Onchidiid Slugs (Gastropoda, Pulmonata). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. In Press, 107360. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2021.107360

   

[Botany • 2021] Allium judaeum (Amaryllidaceae) • A New Species endemic to Israel and the West Bank


Allium judaeum Ben-Natan & Fragman 

in Ben-Natan & Fragman-Sapir, 2021. 
שום יהודה  || DOI: 10.1111/curt.12420

Summary
The genus Allium includes important food plants including onion, garlic, chives, and leeks, as well as cultivars traded widely in the horticultural industry. Yet species limits and diversity in the genus still require further work. The eastern Mediterranean has emerged as a centre of diversity for the genus Allium in recent years. Here we describe a new species, Allium judaeum that is a rare endemic, apparently restricted to the Judean Mountains of Israel and the West Bank, and discuss the ecology and outlook for the plant, and recommendations for its conservation.


    

Allium judaeum Ben-Natan & Fragman sp. nov. 

Type: ISRAEL/PALESTINE. Judean Mountains, Efrat, ..., 900 m, ...



 
Dar Ben-Natan and Ori Fragman-Sapir. 2021. Allium judaeum sp. nov.: Amaryllidaceae. Curtis's Botanical Magazine. DOI: 10.1111/curt.12420
Illustration by Rubin Krief


[Herpetology • 2021] Phylogeographic Advances in Midwife Toads (Alytes) support the Existence of A Novel Taxon Endemic to the Central Pyrenees


Alytes almogavarii inigoi
Dufresnes & Hernandez, 2021
 


Abstract
Although necessary to promote conservation, defining evolutionary units and naming biodiversity remain a difficult task, especially in problematic species groups that experienced a dynamic biogeographic history. In this article, we undertake such task for midwife toads of the Alytes obstetricans complex by integrating recent molecular studies altogether—multilocus phylogenies and population genetic barcoding. Despite a partly unresolved phylogeny underlain by deep cyto-nuclear discordances, nuclear and mitochondrial evidence support the validity of six genuine lineages assigned to two different species (A. obstetricans and A. almogavarii), which could be accurately mapped across most of their ranges. In particular, we demonstrate the existence for an overlooked yet genetically distinct lineage previously confounded with A. almogavarii, confined to the northern part of Huesca Province in the Spanish Central Pyrenees. We describe this micro-endemic as the subspecies Alytes almogavarii inigoi ssp. nov., with reports on the mating call and the larvae. Conservation genetics of eight populations of this new taxon revealed two independent conservation units, separated by topographic barriers. In the wait for upcoming genomic analyses to unravel many elusive aspects of the evolution, diversity and systematics of Alytes, the present paper offers an integrative phylogeographic overview to guide future investigations and generally illustrates how multiple lines of molecular evidence can be combined to clarify the confusing taxonomy of complex species groups.

Keywords: Alytes almogavarii inigoi, Alytes obstetricans, Amphibian, cyto-nuclear discordance, Iberian Peninsula, micro-endemism


 Alytes almogavarii inigoi ssp. nov. 


Christophe Dufresnes and Axel Hernandez. 2021. Phylogeographic Advances in Midwife Toads (Alytes) support the Existence of A Novel Taxon Endemic to the Central Pyrenees. Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research. DOI: 10.1111/jzs.12564

Saturday, November 27, 2021

[Herpetology • 2021] Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva | ตุ๊กกายรุกขเทพ • A New Cryptic Arboreal Species of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus Group (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the Uplands of western Thailand


Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva
Grismer, Suwannapoom, Pawangkhanant, Nazarov, Yushchenko, Naiduangchan, Le, Luu & Poyarkov, 2021


Abstract
The first integrative taxonomic analysis of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus group of Southeast Asia recovered two newly discovered populations from the Tenasserim Mountains in Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand as a new species described here as Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. Based on 1397 base pairs of the mitochondrial gene NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2), C. rukhadeva sp. nov. is the well-supported sister species to a clade containing three undescribed species, C. ngati, and C. cf. interdigitalis with a large uncorrected pairwise sequence divergence from other species in the brevipalmatus group ranging from 15.4–22.1%. Cyrtodactylus elok and C. brevipalmatus are recovered as poorly supported sister species and the well-supported sister lineage to the remainder of the brevipalmatus group. Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. is putatively diagnosable on the basis of a number of meristic characters and easily separated from the remaining species of the brevipalmatus group by a number of discrete morphological characters as well as its statistically significant wide separation in multivariate morphospace. The discovery of C. rukhadeva sp. nov. continues to underscore the unrealized herpetological diversity in the upland forests of the Tenasserim Mountains and that additional field work will undoubtedly result in the discovery of additional new species.

Key words: Bent-toed geckos, integrative taxonomy, Southeast Asia, Tenasserim Mountains

In life coloration and pattern of Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. 
(A) the paratype (ZMMU R-16852) from Hoop Phai Trong, Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand and (B) the holotype (ZMMU R-16581) from Khao Laem Mountain, Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand. Photos by Platon V. Yushchenko.
C. a hatchling (not collected); photo by Mali Naiduangchan.

   

Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov.
 Suggested common name: Tree Spirit Bent-toed Gecko
Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus Ulber 1993:198 (partim).

Diagnosis: Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. can be separated from all other species of the brevipalmatus group by having 9–11 supralabials, 10 or 11 infralabials, 27–30 paravertebral tubercles, 19 or 20 rows of longitudinally arranged tubercles, 34–43 transverse rows of ventrals, 152–154 longitudinal rows of ventrals, nine expanded subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe, 11 unexpanded subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe, 18–20 total subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe, eight or nine expanded subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger, nine or 10 unexpanded subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger, 17–19 total subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger, 16–17 enlarged femorals, 20 femoral pores in the male; 17 precloacal pores in the male; 13–17 enlarged precloacals; 16 post-precloacals; enlarged femorals and enlarged precloacals not continuous; proximal femorals not less than one-half the size of the distal femorals; small tubercles on forelimbs and flanks; small dorsolateral caudal tubercles and ventrolateral caudal fringe; paired enlarged subcaudals; and maximum SVL 79.4 mm (Tables 1, 4).

Bayesian phylogeny of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus group based on 1397 base pairs of ND2 with BBP and UFB nodal support values, respectively at the nodes.

Distribution: Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. is known only from the type locality from Khao Laem Mountain, Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand and Hoop Phai, Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, approximately 7.7 km to the west of the type locality (Fig. 1).

Etymology: The specific epithet “rukhadeva” is given as a noun in apposition and refers to the spirits or gods residing in trees in Thai mythology, known as Rukha Deva - รุกขเทพ (literally “Tree Nymphs”). According to Thai folklore, these sylvan spirits live on tree branches and on large older trees wearing traditional Thai attire, usually in reddish or brownish colours, and are believed to protect the forest. The new arboreal species of Cyrtodactylus resides in one of the remaining fragments of the north Tenasserim montane forests. We want to underscore the need for the immediate assessment of herpetofaunal diversity surveys and implementation of adequate conservation measures for these relic forests.

Distribution of the species of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus group.
Stars = type localities and squares refer to literature records. White squares denote unexamined specimens of uncertain taxonomic status. Localities with specimen numbers denote individuals in the phylogeny (Fig. 2). No topotypic material (red) from the western Phetchabun massif was examined. NP = National Park and WS = Wildlife Sanctuary.

Illustration showing the general similarity body shape and color pattern among five species of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus group.
A. Adult female C. elok (LSUDPC 2589) from Negeri Sembian, Peninsular Malaysia. Photo by L. Lee Grismer. B. Adult male C. sp. 11 (ZMMU R-16492) from Phu Hin Rong Kla National Park, Petchabun Province, Phitsanulok, Thailand. Photo by Nikolay A. Poyarkov.

C. Adult female C. interdigitalis from Tak Mal National Park, Phetchabun Province, Thailand. Photo from Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike. Photo by Evan S. H. Quah. D. Adult female C. cf. interdigitalis (NCSM 79472) from Ban Pha Liep, Houay Liep Stream, Xaignabouli Province, Laos. Photo by Bryan L. Stuart. E. Adult female C. ngati (VNUF R.2020.12) from Pa Thom Cave, Pa Xa Lao Village, Pa Thom Commune, Dien Bien District, Dien Bien Province, Vietnam. Photo by Dzung T. Le.

F. Adult female C. brevipalmatus [ตุ๊กกายโคนนิ้วติด] from the type locality at Khao Luang National Park, Nakon Si Thammarat Provice, Thailand. Photo from Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike. G. Adult male C. cf. ruhkhadeva sp. nov. form Kaeng Krachan National Park, Petchaburi Province, Thailand. Photo from Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike.



Habitat of Cyrtodactylus rukhadeva sp. nov. at the type locality: Khao Laem Mountain, Suan Phueng District, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand.
(A) Submontane forest on the slopes of Khao Laem Mountain.
 (B) A male of the new species hiding among the roots of a strangler fig (Ficus sp.).
Photos by Parinya Pawangkhanant.

      


 L. Lee Grismer, Chatmongkon Suwannapoom, Parinya Pawangkhanant, Roman A. Nazarov, Platon V. Yushchenko, Mali Naiduangchan, Minh Duc Le, Vinh Quang Luu and Nikolay A. Poyarkov. 2021. A New Cryptic Arboreal Species of the Cyrtodactylus brevipalmatus Group (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the Uplands of western Thailand. Vertebrate Zoology. 71: 723-746. DOI: 10.3897/vz.71.e76069


Friday, November 26, 2021

[Paleontology • 2022] Morohasaurus kamitakiensis • A Fossil Monstersauria (Squamata: Anguimorpha) from the Lower Cretaceous Ohyamashimo Formation of the Sasayama Group in Tamba City, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan


Morohasaurus kamitakiensis 
Ikeda, Ota, Tanaka, Ikuno, Kubota, Tanaka & Saegusa, 2022


Highlights: 
• We report a nearly complete left dentary of lizard from the Lower Cretaceous Sasayama Group, Japan.
• The material was described as a new monstersaur taxon “Morohasaurus kamitakiensis”.
• The new taxon might possibly be the oldest representative of the Monstersauria in the world.
• The present finding endorses the high taxonomic and ecological diversity of the Early Cretaceous lizard assemblage in Japan.

Abstract
A nearly complete left dentary of a lizard was excavated from the Lower Cretaceous Ohyamashimo Formation of the Sasayama Group in Tamba City, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. The specimen shows several characters, which suggest its allocation in Monstersauria of the superfamily Varanoidea (Squamata: Anguimorpha). However, the specimen exhibits obvious differences from the known members of the whole Varanoidea. Thus, the specimen is described as a new taxon of cf. Monstersauria, Morohasaurus kamitakiensis gen. et sp. nov.. This new species is characterized by a suit of unique features, such as the sinuous posteroventral rim of the dentary with a large U-shaped upper notch and small V-shaped lower notch, posteroventral corner of intramandibular septum with a weakly pointed eminence projecting posteriorly, and unicuspid, curved trenchant teeth with distinct blade-like carinae on their mesial and distal sides without grooves or serrations. Morohasaurus kamitakiensis might possibly be the oldest representative of the Monstersauria.

Keywords: Monstersauria, Japan, Lower Cretaceous, Ohyamashimo Formation, Oldest representative



 
Tadahiro Ikeda, Hidetoshi Ota, Tomonori Tanaka, Kenji Ikuno, Katsuhiro Kubota, Kohei Tanaka and Haruo Saegusa. 2022. A Fossil Monstersauria (Squamata: Anguimorpha) from the Lower Cretaceous Ohyamashimo Formation of the Sasayama Group in Tamba City, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. Cretaceous Research. 130, 105063. DOI: 10.1016/j.cretres.2021.105063   hitohaku.jp

篠山層群より発掘されたトカゲ類化石の記載論文の出版および臨時展示の実施について

[Paleontology • 2021] Tarchia tumanovae • A New Ankylosaurid from the Upper Cretaceous Nemegt Formation of Mongolia and Implications for Paleoecology of Armoured Dinosaurs


 Tarchia tumanovae 
Park, Lee, Kobayashi, Jacobs, Barsbold, Lee, Kim, Song & Polcyn, 2021

Artwork by Choi Yusik  twitter.com/usikpaleoart 

Abstract
A new ankylosaurid dinosaur, Tarchia tumanovae sp. nov., has been recovered from the Upper Cretaceous Nemegt Formation of Mongolia. It includes a well-preserved skull, dorsal, sacral, caudal vertebrae, sixteen dorsal ribs, ilia, a partial ischium, free osteoderms, and a tail club. The squamosal horns of T. tumanovae are divided into two layers, the external dermal layer and the underlying squamosal horn proper. The irregular ventral margin of the base of the upper dermal layer may represent a resorption surface, suggesting that the squamosal horns of some ankylosaurids underwent extreme ontogenetic remodeling. Localized pathologies on the dorsosacral ribs and the tail provide evidence of agonistic behaviour. The tail club knob asymmetry of T. tumanovae resulted from restricted bone growth due to tail club strikes. Furthermore, T. tumanovae had an anteriorly protruded shovel-shaped beak, which is a morphological character of selective feeders. Ankylosaurid diets shifted from low-level bulk feeding to selective feeding during the Baruungoyot and the Nemegt “age” (middle Campanian-lower Maastrichtian). This ankylosaurid niche shifting might have been a response to habitat change and competition with other bulk-feeding herbivores.
 


Dinosauria Owen, 1842

Ankylosauridae Brown, 1908
Ankylosaurinae Nopcsa, 1918

Tarchia Maryañska, 1977
Type species. Tarchia kielanae Maryañska, 1977

Revised diagnosis. An ankylosaurid distinguished by having the following unique set of characters (autapomorphies with an asterisk): a narrow internarial bar of the premaxillae (shared with Tsagantegia) (ambiguous in Tarchia kielanae); large, rhomboidal loreal caputegulum with a laterally extended posterior keel (shared with Saichania) (ambiguous in T. kielanae); subrectangular frontal caputegulae (shared with Saichania); a “neck” present at the base of the quadratojugal horn (shared with Pinacosaurus mephistocephalus and Minotaurasaurus) (ambiguous in T. kielanae); sigmoidal and peaked anteromedial supraorbital caputegulum*; posterolateral supraorbital caputegulum with a rounded anterior surface, and a flat, anteriorly-inclined posterior surface*; anteromedially poorly defined postorbital fossa that medially reaches the lateral nuchal caputegulae*; occiput visible in dorsal view (shared with Minotaurasaurus and Zaraapelta); foramen magnum taller than wide*. Differs from Minotaurasaurus, Pinacosaurus grangeri, Saichania, and Zaraapelta in having no postocular caputegulae (ambiguous in T. kielanae) and a posteroventrally oriented occipital condyle. Differs from Minotaurasaurus, P. grangeri, and Zaraapelta in having confluent supraorbital horns. Differs from Minotaurasaurus and Saichania in having a relatively tall braincase. Differs from Minotaurasaurus and Zaraapelta in having a long nuchal crest. Differs from Minotaurasaurus in having relatively long paroccipital processes that laterally reach the squamosal horns. Differs from Saichania in having remodeled squamosal horns and anteroposteriorly short lateral nuchal caputegulae.

   


   




Tarchia tumanovae sp. nov.

Etymology. Named in honour of Tatiana Tumanova for her contributions toward the understanding of Mongolian ankylosaurs.

Holotype. MPC-D 100/1353, a well-preserved skull, dorsal, sacral, caudal vertebrae, sixteen dorsal ribs, ilia, a partial ischium, free osteoderms, and tail club.

Locality and horizon. Upper Cretaceous (upper Campanian-lower Maastrichtian) Nemegt Formation, Hermiin Tsav, southern Gobi Desert, Mongolia.


Diagnosis. An ankylosaurid distinguished by having the following unique set of characters: a single relatively bulbous internarial caputegulum that does not reach the rostral tip of beak*; a nasofrontal sagittal furrow with a weak Z-shaped offset (shared with Tarchia kielanae); lateral nuchal caputegulae taller laterally than medially (shared with Saichania); vomerine keel extends below the alveolar ridge (shared with Saichania). Differs from Minotaurasaurus, Pinacosaurus grangeri, T. kielanae, T. teresae, and Zaraapelta in having a moderate-sized basioccipital foramen. Differs from Minotaurasaurus, P. grangeri, Saichania, and Zaraapelta in having no postocular caputegulae and a posteroventrally oriented occipital condyle. Differs from Minotaurasaurus, P. grangeri, T. teresae, and Zaraapelta in having an anteriorly situated quadrate-quadratojugal region. Differs from Minotaurasaurus, P. grangeri, and Zaraapelta in having confluent supraorbital horns. Differs from P. grangeri, Saichania, and Zaraapelta in having a tall foramen magnum. Differs from Saichania, T. kielanae, and Zaraapelta in having unfused quadrate to the exoccipital area. Differs from Minotaurasaurus and Saichania in having a relatively tall braincase. Differs from Minotaurasaurus and Zaraapelta in having subrectangular frontal caputegulae and a long nuchal crest. Differs from Minotaurasaurus in having narrow narial caputegulae and long paroccipital processes that laterally reach the squamosal horns. Differs from Saichania in having remodeled squamosal horns, anteroposteriorly short lateral nuchal caputegulae, and occiput visible in dorsal view. Differs from T. teresae by having an interpterygoid vacuity visible in occipital view.



  

Jin-Young Park, Yuong-Nam Lee, Yoshitsugu Kobayashi, Louis L. Jacobs, Rinchen Barsbold, Hang-Jae Lee, Namsoo Kim, Kyo-Young Song and Michael J. Polcyn. 2021. A New Ankylosaurid from the Upper Cretaceous Nemegt Formation of Mongolia and Implications for Paleoecology of Armoured Dinosaurs. Scientific Reports. 11: 22928. DOI:  10.1038/s41598-021-02273-4
 

[Herpetology • 2021] Litoria balatus & L. quiritatus • Two New Frog Species from the Litoria rubella Species Group (Anura: Pelodryadidae) from eastern Australia

 
Litoria dentata (Keferstein 1868) 

Litoria balatus
 
Litoria quiritatus
Rowley, Mahony, Hines, Myers, Price, Shea & Donnellan, 2021


Abstract
The bleating tree frog (Litoria dentata) is one of the more prominent pelodryadid frogs of eastern Australia by virtue of its extremely loud, piercing, male advertisement call. A member of the Litoria rubella species group, L. dentata has a broad latitudinal distribution and is widespread from coastal and subcoastal lowlands through to montane areas. A recent mitochondrial DNA analysis showed a deep phylogeographic break between populations of L. dentata on the mid-north coast of New South Wales. Here we extended the mitochondrial survey with more geographically comprehensive sampling and tested the systematic implications of our findings with nuclear genome wide single-nucleotide polymorphism, morphological and male advertisement call datasets. While similar in appearance and in male advertisement call, our integrative analysis demonstrates the presence of three species which replace each other in a north-south series. We redescribe Litoria dentata, which is restricted to coastal north-eastern New South Wales, and formally describe Litoria balatus sp. nov., from south-eastern Queensland, and Litoria quiritatus sp. nov., from the mid-coast of New South Wales to north-eastern Victoria.

Key words: Frog diversity, genetic diversity, species complex


Images in life of Litoria dentata.
 A) male AMS R184779, Kyogle NSW, B) male AMS R184704, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, NSW,
C) male, no voucher, Guy Fawkes River National Park, NSW, D) amplexing pair, no vouchers, Guy Fawkes River National Park, NSW,
E) male, no voucher, Guy Fawkes River National Park, NSW, F) male, no voucher, Barrington NSW,
G) male, no voucher, Kookabookra NSW, H) male AMS R184779, Kyogle, NSW, I) male AMS R184704, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, NSW, J) male AMS R184705, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, NSW.
All images by Jodi Rowley.

Litoria dentata (Keferstein 1868) 
Robust Bleating Tree Frog

Revised diagnosis. Litoria dentata is distinguished from all species in the Litoria rubella group by a combination of (1) adult body size 28–42 mm in males and 29–42 mm in females, (2) relatively robust build, (3) the presence of a single, continuous, irregularly edged, dark brown dorsal band, (4) the absence of light spots on the dorsum, (5) lack of a well-defined pale mid-dorsal stripe, (6) absence of distinctive pale markings above the groin, vent and along lower leg, (7) a dorsolateral line diffusing above insertion of the arm, and (8) adult males having a vocal sac that is black or very dark yellowish black when deflated and yellowish brown when inflated.



  Images in life of Litoria balatus sp. nov.
A) QM J95155, B) QM J95156, Mount Victoria, Bunya Mountains Road, adjoining Bunya Mountains National Park, Qld,
C) QM J93232, Ocean View, Qld, D) QM J86660, Karawatha Forest Park, Qld,
E) QM J97210, Samsonvale, Qld, F) QM J96340, Maroon, Qld,
G) QM J97210, Samsonvale, Qld, H) QM J96340, Maroon, Qld, I) QM J96341, Barney View, Qld, J) QM J86661, Karawatha, Qld.
All images by Harry B. Hines.

  

Litoria balatus sp. nov. 
Slender Bleating Tree Frog 

Diagnosis. Litoria balatus sp. nov. is distinguished from all species in the Litoria rubella group by a combination of (1) adult body size 26–44 mm in males and 33–43 mm in females, (2) relatively slender build, (3) the presence of a single, continuous, irregularly edged, dark brown dorsal band, (4) the absence of light spots on the dorsum, (5) lack of a well-defined pale mid-dorsal stripe, (6) absence of distinctive pale markings above the groin, vent and along lower leg, (7) presence of a distinct dorsolateral line continuing to groin, and (8) adult males having a vocal sac that is black.

Etymology. The specific epithet, balatus, is a masculine Latin 4th declension noun, meaning “a bleating”, used as a noun in apposition to the genus name.



 Images in life of Litoria quiritatus sp. nov.
A) male, no voucher, Blacktown, NSW (Stephen Mahony), B) male, no voucher, Darkes Forest, NSW (Jodi Rowley),
C) male, no voucher, Darkes Forest NSW (Jodi Rowley), D) male, no voucher, Barrington, NSW (Jodi Rowley),
E) male, no voucher, Barrington, NSW (Jodi Rowley), F) male, Ourimbah, no voucher, NSW (Steve Donnellan).

Litoria quiritatus sp. nov. 
Screaming Tree Frog 

Diagnosis. Litoria quiritatus sp. nov. is distinguished from all species in the Litoria rubella group by a combination of (1) adult body size 36–43 mm in males and 34–46 mm in females, (2) relatively robust build, (3) the presence of a single, continuous, irregularly edged, dark brown dorsal band, (4) the absence of light spots on the dorsum, (5) lack of a well-defined pale mid-dorsal stripe, (6) absence of distinctive pale markings above the groin, vent and along lower leg, (7) a dorsolateral line diffusing above insertion of the arm, and (8) adult males having a vocal sac that is yellow when deflated and when inflated.

Etymology. The specific epithet, quiritatus, is a masculine Latin 4th declension noun based on the verb quirito, meaning a shriek or scream, used as a noun in apposition to the genus name.



    


 Jodi J. L. Rowley, M. J. Mahony, Harry B. Hines, S. Myers, Luke C. Price, Glenn M. Shea & Stephen C. Donnellan. 2021. Two New Frog Species from the Litoria rubella Species Group from eastern Australia. Zootaxa. 5071(1); 1-41.  DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.5071.1.1

Bleating or screaming? Two new, very loud, frog species described in eastern Australia